Business Law

BBUS 230

Week 4

Torts

Week 4: Torts

  • Overview
  • Definition
  • Private wrong
  • Plaintiffs
  • Individuals
  • Class action

Week 4: Torts

  • Defendants
  • 11th Amendment immunity
  • Protects gov’t

Week 4: Torts

  • Compare to
  • Public wrongs
  • Criminal law
  • Civil infractions
  • Boundary: civil v. criminal
  • Criminal = recklessness
  • Civil = negligence

Week 4: Torts

  • Tort “Reform”
  • “Frivolous” lawsuits
  • McDonald’s coffee case https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ddO134L2VO0 (4:45)
  • Review steps in litigation
  • Easy to file a lawsuit?
  • Ways a judge can dismiss baseless lawsuits?

Week 4: Torts

  • History of “reform”
  • Railroads
  • Defenses
  • Wages & hours
  • Lochner v. New York (1905)
  • West Coast Hotel v. Parrish (1937)

Week 4: Torts

Imagine that you are running a business and that some bad thing happens. Try to be specific about what your business is and what that bad event is. What do you think you should consider, given what we have looked at so far? What specific steps could you have taken in order to avoid liability?

Week 4: Torts

  • Sources

State law

  • State
  • Local
  • Common law
  • Statutory law

Restatements

Treatises

Practice manuals

Week 4: Torts

  • Types
  • Intentional

Culpable mental state

  • Unintentional

Culpable mental state

Strict liability

Week 4: Torts

  • Common Torts
  • Battery
  • Assault
  • False imprisonment
  • Trespass to chattels
  • Negligence
  • Common law
  • Per se

Week 4: Torts

  • Trespass to land
  • Theft
  • Interference with business interest
  • Defamation
  • Infliction of emotional distress

Week 4: Torts

  • Battery
  • Required elements (to prove)
  • Intentional
  • Contact
  • With person
  • Of another
  • Offensive
  • To reasonable person

Week 4: Torts

Assault

  • Required elements (to prove)
  • Intentional
  • Fear
  • Imminent battery
  • To reasonable person

Week 4: Torts

Trespass to Chattels

Required elements (to prove)

Intentional

Interference with

Rightful

Ownership, or

Control

Of personal property

Of another

Week 4: Torts

  • Interference with business relationship
  • Required elements (to prove)

Mental state

Intentional

Negligent

Business relationship

Existing

Reasonable expectation of future

Interference

Variable

Damages

Week 4: Torts

  • Defamation
  • Elements
  • Falsity
  • Mental state
  • Intentional
  • Negligent

Week 4: Torts

  • Elements (continued)
  • Publication
  • To third parties
  • Who understand
  • As fact
  • Not as opinion
  • Measurable damages

Week 4: Torts

  • Defenses to defamation
  • Public figure exception
  • Public interest exception
  • Actual malice

Week 4: Torts

Come up with a hypothetical scenario illustrating as many intentional torts as you can. Make sure that you precisely identify specific facts that satisfy specific elements of each intentional tort in your scenario.

Week 4: Torts

UNINTENTIONAL TORTS

Week 4: Torts

Week 4: Torts

  • Elements

Duty

  • General
  • Specific

Breach

Week 4: Torts

Causation

  • Cause in fact

“But for” test

“Substantial factor” test

Proximate cause

Policy https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJZDX5W2T-c (3:09)

Week 4: Torts

Intervening Causes

-Forseeability

-Terrorism

Damages

-Variable

Week 4: Torts

  • Ownership/Control of Land
  • Duties
  • To invitee
  • Definition – landowner’s benefit
  • Remove
  • Known dangers

Week 4: Torts

  • To licensee
  • Definition – licensee’s benefit
  • Warn
  • To trespasser
  • Definition
  • No duty

Week 4: Torts

  • Caveats

Attractive nuisance

Bodily harm

Week 4: Torts

  • Res ipsa loquitur
  • “The thing speaks for itself”
  • Elements
  • Instrumentality
  • Nexus
  • No other explanation

Week 4: Torts

  • Strict Liability
  • Products liability
  • Chain of production
  • Designer
  • Manufacturer
  • Wholesaler
  • Retailer

Week 4: Torts

  • Ultrahazardous Activity
  • Type of activity
  • Allocation of fault

Week 4: Torts

Come up with a hypothetical scenario illustrating as many unintentional torts as you can. Make sure that you precisely identify specific facts that satisfy specific elements of each intentional tort in your scenario.